Bicycle minister pitched for Cabinet

JIJI

A nonpartisan group of lawmakers plans to call for the creation of a bicycle minister whose task would be to promote cycling.

National bicycle administration should be integrated with the new ministerial post, the group led by Justice Minister Sadakazu Tanigaki said in a draft proposal put together Thursday.

The bicycle minister should be a cyclist who enjoys the activity as a hobby, the draft said.

The group will meet Monday to finalize the proposal and submit it to the government. Some members are pushing Tanigaki, known as an avid cyclist, to take the proposed post.

The group comprises Diet members mostly from the ruling Liberal Democratic Party, coalition partner New Komeito and the Democratic Party of Japan, the main opposition force.

The draft calls on the government to promote cycling as an effective means of transportation for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and urges it to develop infrastructure, including cycling lanes and parking lots, to encourage the use of bicycles.